Olympian Bhavani Devi will lead the team of four Indian fencers at the Fencing World Cup 2022 in Tbilisi, Georgia, starting on January 14.
Bhavani Devi will be joined by Josna Christy Jose, Anitha Karunakaran and Alka Vallattuparambil at the women’s individual Fencing World Cup.
Bhavani Devi became the first Indian fencer to qualify for the Olympic Games, when she made the cut for Tokyo 2020. She won the first-round contest but fell to eventual bronze-medallist, Manon Brunet of France in the round of 32.
Currently ranked No. 2 in the world, Brunet will also be competing at the upcoming event, which will feature 165 fencers.
Former Olympics gold medallist Kim Ji-yeon, reigning Asian champion Yoon Ji-su and 2018 Youth Olympics winner Liza Pusztai are some of the notable names at the meet.
The 28-year-old Bhavani Devi is currently ranked 55 in the world and is a part of the Indian sports ministry’s Target Olympics Podium Scheme (TOPS).
After the tournament in Georgia, the Indian fencer will compete at another World Cup in Plovdiv, Bulgaria, scheduled from January 28 to 29. Two more World Cups in Greece (March 4 to 5) and Belgium (March 18 to 19) will follow.
The Indian fencer had won gold in women’s individual sabre at the Charleville National Competition, in France in October.
Bhavani Devi is currently training in Orleans, France with her new coach Christian Bauer.
Apart from Bhavani’s Devi’s exploits in the world, Josna Christy Jose has a team gold at the 2019 South Asian Games.
Meanwhile, the men's Team World Cup, which begins on January 17, will feature four Indian fencers - Gisho Kumaresan, Prince, Abhay Shinde and Karan Singh.
Where to watch the Fencing World Cup 2022 Tbilisi live in India?
The live streaming of the Fencing World Cup 2022 Tbilisi will be available on the official YouTube channel of FIE (international fencing federation).